Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Gujarat government, said that after the S-6 coach was set on fire, these culprits started pelting stones. Their intention was that no passenger could get out of the burning bogie.
Image Credit source: PTI
Before the second phase of voting in Gujarat, the state’s BJP government has opposed showing softness in the Godhra incident (2002). Communal riots broke out after the death of 59 kar sevaks due to burning of a train bogie in Godhra. Actually, the Supreme Court said that some of these convicts were stone pelters and they have spent a long time in jail. In such a situation, some can be released on bail. But the Gujarat government has said not to show any leniency. The appeal of these convicts is pending in the Supreme Court since 2018. After this incident, riots broke out in the entire state. The Gujarat government has described the role of stone pelters as serious.
Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and P.S. Narasimha’s bench said that the convicts have been in jail for 17-18 years and the court can consider granting bail to these convicts of stone pelting. On this, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said that this is not just a case of stone pelting because due to this the victims could not get out of the burning bogie. 31 people are serving life sentence in 2002 Godhra case. The fire was blazing and stones were raining.
The role of every culprit will be investigated
Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Gujarat government, said that after the S-6 coach was set on fire, these culprits started pelting stones. Their intention was that no passenger could get out of the burning bogie and no one from outside could go to save them. Mehta, however, assured the court that he would investigate the role of each convict and see if some could be released on bail. The Supreme Court has asked the SG to submit its report on December 15 while allowing this.
63 people were acquitted
In 2017, the Gujarat High Court commuted the death sentence of 11 people to life imprisonment. Along with this, 63 people were acquitted in the case while upholding the life sentence of 20 others. On 27 February 2022, 59 Hindus lost their lives, including 29 men, 22 women and 8 children, when a coach of the Sabarmati Express train was set on fire near Godhra station. In August this year, 11 convicts serving life sentence in the Bilkis Bano rape and murder case were released prematurely after getting the approval of the central government.